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Writing

My First Book Release Day with When Plans Go Awry

It’s my very first book release day and there are so many exciting things happening. I’m finding myself wanting to use all the terms for today. Happy Book Launch, Happy Release Day, and Happy Book Birthday. So When Plans Go Awry, I wish you all of these!

Happy Release Day for When Plans Go Awry blog banner

And I ask all of you to come celebrate with me as my debut novel, When Plans Go Awry, releases out into the world. When Plans Go Awry is now available at Amazon in paperback, eBook, and on Kindle Unlimited. The paperback is also available on Barnes and Noble’s website.

I have had such great response to the cover and the story, from early readers. Much to be thankful for! I hope you will enjoy the story as well.

Historical Romance Book Cover pre-order link with words When Plans Go Awry by Denise M. Colby which is a historical christian romance novel

Other Book Release Excitement

I’ve been busy creating author and book accounts at AmazonFictionfinderGoodReads, and BookBub, so if you are on any of these, please follow me! And if you haven’t yet signed up for my newsletter, please do so to stay informed of future book events and books.

Also, I wanted to share I have a new logo!

Red one room schoolhouse with text underneath Denise M. Colby Historical Romance Author

And a variation with my tagline

Denise M. Colby Historical Romance sweetened with faith, hope, & love logo

Links to other activities this week

What fun I’ve had leading up to this day. From my first author blog interview, to my first author podcast interview, to the book blog tour my book is taking this week.

Click on the graphic below to check out the book blog tour. Every day there are several book bloggers posting on their book blog. The complete list is listed here on the Silver Dagger Book Tour page.

When Plans Go Awry Book Launch Blog Tour graphic to celebrate New Book Release

I’m just so grateful Luke and Olivia’s story can be read and enjoyed by everyone. Thank you so much for your support. And if you feel led to leave a review after reading it, that would be so appreciated. Leaving reviews is one of the most helpful things you can do for authors.

Stay tuned for more book launch news as the fun continues.

Blessings,

Denise

Writing

My Very First Book Cover

Since my last post, I now have my very first book cover design completed, and I’ve created a book page on my website. This year everything is moving fast. And I’m loving every minute of it!

I was able to give a sneak peek to my newsletter subscribers before posting about it on Facebook and Instagram. But I also wanted to talk about my very first book cover here on my blog. It’s such a big moment for me, after years of wondering what my book cover would look like.

And now, here it is!

Historical Romance Book Cover with land, one-room schoolhouse, schoolmarm on cover with words When Plans Go Awry by Denise M. Colby which is a historical christian romance novel

There’s a one-room schoolhouse.

A river.

And Olivia, holding her journal.

My very first book cover!

I only get one time to say that it’s my first book cover, so it’s fun for me to state it. As I said earlier, I’m enjoying every minute of this new chapter in my writing journey.

It’s amazing how quickly this book cover came together. The overall design was complete within three to four days. Way shorter than what it took to write the story. I may never look at covers the same now that I understand how they are put together. Now the next part is the back and inside. I can’t wait to see everything in print.

My publisher, Scrivenings Press, has created a book page for When Plans go Awry. And just this week I was able to create a GoodReads book page as well, where you can add it to your ‘want to read’ list. And again I have my own dedicated book page on my website.

All of these pages are showing off my very first book cover. As well as a short description of the story. It feels very surreal!

Book Launch News

So as you can see, I have many exciting things to share here, and many more to come. If you are interested in joining my launch team, go to my launch team interest form sign-up. You will get to read the book before it launches, have a chance to win prizes, and help me launch When Plans Go Awry.

I would love it if you would join me. And I can’t wait for you to read all about Olivia, Luke, the town of Washton, and its wily rooster, Bert.

Writing

My First Book Contract

I have good news to share. I signed my first book contract in 2023 and the first story in my Best-laid Plans series will publish in June, 2024.

How did this book contract come about, you ask?

I’m excited to share I won the grand prize in the Scrivenings Press #GetPubbed writing contest. My novel, When Plans Go Awry, won first place in the Historical Romance category, and then went on to win the grand prize. The grand prize includes a book contract. My novel is scheduled to be launched into the world on June 4, 2024.

Denise M. Colby won the grand prize in the Scrivenings Press #GetPubbed 2023 contest for When Plans Go Awry, which includes a book contract
The contest results were announced on November 16. I think I will always remember this day. A pivotal turning point in my writing story. Where I went from aspiring to contracted.

What’s amazing is looking back over the past thirteen (yes, 13!) years of working on my stories, making friends, learning, and growing as both a person and as a writer. I’m so thankful for the journey.

The path has been a lot of winding cross-backed, up and down, narrow and wide dirt trails, with a few paved and flat sections along the way. Then, on November 16, these contest results were announced, and everything has changed — and I’m on a new path now!

Scrivenings Press welcomes Denise M. Colby to the family of authors with her first book contract for her grand prize entry When Plans Go Awry which will publish in June 2024

The word CHANGE was the perfect word for me in 2023. 

From a writing perspective I chose this word because I wanted to change how I approached my writing. To not be afraid to change my opening or what my characters said. I wanted to be able to try new phrasing and change my manuscript for the better. I wanted to embrace change in different ways including pitching and trying new contests.

And because of that, I can now add additional changes that have happened this year! 

  1. I finaled in a contest and got to submit my entire manuscript 
  2. That entire manuscript won 1st place in a contest
  3. And then won the grand prize in that contest
  4. That grand prize included my first book contract
  5. My first book contract is now a 3-book series titled Best-laid Plans
  6. And my first book, When Plans Go Awry, will be published June 4, 2024

Very Big Changes in My Personal Life, Too

Change has been up front and center in my personal life this year as well. With one college graduation and our youngest’s high school graduation, we are moving on from being booster presidents and weekly performances or activities to attend. Our middle son asked his sweetheart to marry him, and we are experiencing new things with being parents of the groom. We’ve been blessed with new responsiblities in our day jobs, and been able to travel quite a bit this year.

I’m so excited for June 2024. We will celebrate a book launch and a new marriage.

Celebrate my book contract with me!

To follow my publishing journey in 2024, sign up for my newsletter or follow me on my facebook or instagram pages. I will be building a street team to help with the book launch, so stay tuned for more details in the coming months.

As the year 2023 ends, all of these things are the best changes possible. And I’m so excited for 2024 and what is to come. I also can’t wait to share my 2024 focus word with you. That will be in my next post!

Denise M. Colby loves to write words to encourage, enrich, and engage with others. You can find similar encouraging posts on A Slice of Orange such as meeting writing goals or when your confidence wavers, and on her own website Moments of Encouragement. She also loves to write about her word of the year and share quotes that include that specific word in them. Each word builds a new layer in her writing journey (and her life). In 2022, her word was Work. 2023 year, her word was change.

History

Meet My Rooster Character I Named Bert

I have found myself quite partial to roosters ever since I added a colorful rooster character to my story. I named him Bert (for many reasons), and his main role is that of Schoolhouse Protector. More specifically, defender of schoolteachers who teach in the schoolhouse. 

Character drawing of a my rooster character named Bert, illustrated by Kyle Colby
My Rooster Character’s name is Bert.
My son Kyle brings him to life in this
first ever shown depiction!

After researching the creatures I had learned I could have quite a bit of fun with him. Did you know that roosters make a bunch of different sounds? I thought they only crowed. But as I researched further, I learned roosters are very protective of those in their care and they have different noises they make to call out warnings or to get someone’s attention.

Why A Rooster Character?

I wanted an animal in my Going West story, but I wanted to do something other than a dog. Since my story includes ranches and the west in 1869, I googled different types of animals including roosters. One of the most interesting thing about a rooster is that they crow all throughout the day, not just the morning. I liked that. I could have a rooster tell time both before school and after. 

As I researched roosters, I came across Chinese Astrology and the meaning behind the rooster. Then I came across an article with how the rooster has been used as a symbol in Christianity. From Peter’s denial and ultimate remorse and repentance, to the crowing at dawn representing the light over darkness, to the emblem on weathervanes respresenting a Christian’s attitude of watchfulness and readiness for the sudden return of Christ. All of it intrigued me, and since I’m writing Historical Inspirational, helped solidify my choosing the rooster as my animal character.

Digging into a Rooster’s Personality

Once I decided on the rooster, I wanted to understand it’s sounds. I learned there are several breeds of roosters and they all have different noises and personalities. They love to be the center of attention. I found a fun blog from someone who writes about her roosters and their shenanigans. The fun and differing personalities she covered, provided ideas of what I could create and inspired a rooster character I couldn’t wait to expand on.

It was also helpful to pay attention to some other famous rooster characters and how unique, memorable and fun they are.

a compilation image of 4 rooster characters from Moana (hey hey), Robin Hood (Alan-A-Dale), Looney Tunes (Foghorn), & Three Caballeros (Panchito Pistoles)
Other famous rooster characters include Hey Hey from Moana, Looney Tunes Foghorn Leghorn, Alan-A-Dale from Disney’s Robin Hood, and Panchito Pistoles from Disney’s The Three Caballeros.

Wouldn’t it be fun if my Bert became as famous as these colorful roosters?

Character Names Mean Something

I wanted to name my rooster something meaningful. As I was flushing out his character, I wanted to honor my mom, who liked roosters. And I wanted a short name. Something easy for the kids and townfolk to call him. My mom’s name is Beverly (she went by Bev), so I wanted a name that started with a B. One of my all-time favorite movie characters is Bert, from Mary Poppins. After writing out a bunch of alternates, I kept coming back to this one. And so I named my rooster character Bert.

Writing an Animal Character

I’ve had a lot of fun writing Bert and can’t wait for you to meet him. He’s spunky, colorful, loyal, caring, observant and very smart. And he stands by my heroine’s side whether she wants him to or not.

Since writing him, I now notice roosters everywhere, and it immediately brings to mind, Bert. Last year at the Knott’s Berry Farm Berry Festival, there were roosters sitting amongst flowers in key spots. I found myself on a rooster hunt, since every single one was a different style and color palette. I’ve been saving these pictures till I wrote a blog post about it. And look forward to sharing more about roosters and Bert in the future.

Word A Year

When Life Gets Busy, Blog Posts Fall Behind

Life has been busy and I’ve fallen behind on my blog posts. Hard to believe, it’s been six months since I’ve posted a post here on my website. But just because I didn’t post, didn’t mean I didn’t have things I wanted to share. Quite the opposite. There’s been a lot of life happening, that I just haven’t been able to keep up!

blog post header graphic with distressed wood in the background and words When Life Gets Busy, Blog Posts Fall Behind in bold font

So where do I start? What’s most important?

First. I just want to say hello. It’s been a while. And I’ve missed writing my blog. 

Second, with so many topics to cover, I thought I would start with my word of the year. That one word is what is helping me spend time where I need to spend my time.

My Focus word has stayed true even when life got busy

laptop, notepad, glasses, pencil case, planner with word work. Life gets busy so you have to work at managing your time

Work is my word this year. I talked about that in my last blog post Wisdom of Selecting a Focus Word Every Year and the progression from the word WISDOM in 2021 to WORK for 2022.

It’s not a glamorous word. But I’ve found it to be a helpful word. And I need lots of help if I’m ever going to publish my book!

Take a look at my instagram account. Whenever I find references to my word of the year, I post about it. I have a story higlight for the word WORK. One for WISDOM too, if that interests you. I find it fun to capture and organize these words.

And periodically I like to blog about my word too.

Which is what I’m doing here. For example, as a noun, work is defined as: exertion or effort directed to produce or accomplish something. I’m definitely making an effort on producing a final manuscript that can be published. I also want to be an encourager with my words.

And so in the act of encourager, here are some phrases that use my 2022 focus word. I hope that they will encourage you for whatever you want to work on this year.

Dreams don’t work, unless you do.

My manuscript is a work in progress

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart

Colossions 3:24-25

Which is exactly what I’ve been doing in 2022. I process my thoughts by writing. I explore what’s in my brain by writing. And I’ve missed writing blog posts and I’m ready to jump back in to posting again.

What I found myself not doing at the end of 2021 was writing. But I’ve found it takes work to write. It takes work to find the time to write. Which is why I love this word so much. It helps me focus. And as I go through another round of edits on my manuscript, I’ve been working little by little to keep working toward my goal of someday sharing my book with you.

But wait! There’s more to how my life has been busy.

My third point is this. There’s been a lot of life that’s happened to me over the last few months. Some of which has been amazing fun and I will cover in future posts, and some of it, not so much. Life can be challenging at times and you have to work through things one day at a time. (See how I threw in my focus word?) The not so fun parts for me have included health issues and a car accident that’s taken me a while to bounce back from. And so, I’ve had to limit what I worked on.

And my blog was one of those areas I had to let go for a while.

But I’ve really missed having a place to share. A place to encourage. And a place just to write what God puts on my heart.

I’m happy to be back. Thank you for joining me. We are all in this journey together. Wishing you all the best this month.

Word of the Year

The Wisdom of Selecting a New Focus Word Every Year

I have found the process of selecting a new focus word every year to be a fascinating journey. Last year’s focus word, Wisdom, was an interesting find. (you can learn all about how I came to select that word in this blog post from last year, A Year to Focus On Wisdom.)

Blog header left side words say The Wisdom of Selecting a New Focus Word Every Year and right side stack of rocks balancing on each other

Something I didn’t share is that as I look back over all the words I’ve chosen for the past eight years, I learned something: they all build on each other. And it took the word year Wisdom to figure that out.

There’s a pattern that unfolds with each focus word

Each word represents where I am at a particular time in my life journey – both in writing and personally. And as the year unfolds, I grow into that word more and more. Which then leads to the next word. Again, the idea that they build on each other.

How did I figure that out?

Well, when I was writing in my word journal, I came to an ah-ha moment.

I found an old scripture card with my name on it. Can you guess what it said?

Denise: Wise Discerner

Two name cards on top of wood background. Name is Denise is a Wise Discerner

To find my name Denise linked to the phrase “Wise Discerner” was a shock. Especially with my word being Wisdom. Just one more sign that I was on the correct path.

And so the goal for 2021 became something more. 

I guess you could say I wanted to grow into my name.

But at the same time I had to admit something.

I never considered myself wise. Oh, I wanted to be. But I respond without thinking, and have a hard time making decisions on things because I worry about making the wrong one (even in my writing). All things that I hoped by choosing the word wisdom would help me improve.

What I didn’t realize, is that all the words that came before: Hope, Believe, Strength, Steadfast, Purposeful, and Courage had to happen first before I could embrace Wisdom.

It definitely provided some clarity and knowledge to chew on.

This whole building on each other thing. Which adds credence to the idea that I’m never really done with a word I’ve chosen. I actually find myself still referencing all those words in my life.

And you could say in some cases I have grown in wisdom this past year.

I’m not as quick to rush in as I used to be, and I hope to seek God in everything more, as well as make decisions a bit better. I grew in understanding that the words knowledge and wisdom are different and you need both to make wise decisions.

And I took time to really think about things. My writing and finding balance. I think I did some of that, although I know I could always do it better.

By the end of the year, I sort of took a break from all the inputs and outputs of my writing (newletters, blogs, writing groups), which is helping me come back in 2022 with a fresh perspective.

So as I venture into another new year, with another new word, I love to evaluate the process of selecting one.

Again I thought about what was important in the next year for my writing goals and my life goals

I wrote a list of words that communicated that and then moved on, coming back to the list periodically. 

It wasn’t until I dove into my Bible to find verses with some of them, that the list grew smaller. Then I received a Christmas card from one of the writing groups I belong to and the verse in the middle?

He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it.

Philippians 1:6

And I knew what my 2022 word had to be.

WORK

Something I chose because God isn’t finished with me yet. And I am not finished with this writing journey. 

But I have to get to WORK if I’m going to be a published author.

I took time at the end of last year to find verses and quotes and figure out how I wanted to use the word, and several ideas began to pop into my thoughts. Energy to dive in and get to work.

laptop, notepad, glasses, pencil case, planner with word work

And that is so exciting.

Welcome 2022! Now, let’s get to work.

To read more about my why I chose the word work, check out my blog post at A Slice of Orange, Being Out of Balance Stifles Creativity.

History

Historical Buildings at Knott’s Berry Farm

Earlier this year, we visited Knott’s Berry Farm for the Boysenberry Festival and I found myself taking a trip down history lane as we walked through Ghost Town. I love all the historical buildings. And I find myself wanting to sit down and take in the environment and let my mind wander back in history.

Ghost Town was originally built by Walter Knott in 1940, inspired by his mother’s 1868 journey to California in a covered wagon. It came about because people were waiting hours to eat at his wife’s restaurant and they needed something to do. He started with a main street, where he built a saloon, sheriff’s office, assay office, barbershop, and more.

If I could bring my laptop and write while sitting amongst it all, I would. From the one-room schoolhouse, which is a major setting in my novels, to the train, which carries my teachers west from Cincinatti (in 1869), it all transports me back 150 years.

Denise M. Colby standing in front of historical red one-room schoolhouse at Knotts Berry Farm
Here I am standing in front of Knotts Berry Farm’s One-Room Schoolhouse, which is similar to the one in my fictional town of Washton

FUN FACT ABOUT ME: I love searching for and finding one-room schoolhouses. Take a look at my page dedicated to those I’ve captured during my travels.

Train Engine rests amongst the historical buildings in Ghost Town at Knott's Berry Farm
Since my boys were little, our family has had a love affair with trains. Fun to be up close to an engine such as this one sitting on a rail in Ghost Town at Knott’s Berry Farm

Historical Buildings Show Us What Life Was Like

Historical towns were much smaller than towns today, with a main street that housed a general store, blacksmith shop, livery, and hotel. One-room schoolhouse’s sometimes doubled as a church or meeting hall, and majority of people ranched or ran a shop. A town grew if it had a train station.

I attempted to capture the essence of this old town in my photos and jot down notes to remember the feelings and emotions that bubbled up to the surface while I was there. This way I could carry them into my stories when I write.

Do you get a sense of history when you see these images?

One of the cool things about the Blacksmith shop is that they make and sell pieces in the store.

It’s amazing to see keys, branding irons, horseshoes, and locks that were made by hand.

The blacksmith shop is one of the historical buildings at Knott's Berry Farm

Have you ever visited Knott’s? Or is there another town that you like to visit to look at the historical buildings?

Denise M. Colby loves history, books, Disney, and musicals and not always in that order. Besides her blog here, she also contributes monthly at a writer’s blog A Slice of Orange.

Marketing for Authors

Add SEO to Your Website with Book Reviews

Did you know that writing a book review and posting it on your blog can increase your SEO?Yes, it definitely can. Keep reading to learn what seven steps to take to add SEO with book reviews.

Blog Header with aqua blue and white desk, keyboard titled Add SEO to Your Website with Book Reviews by Marketing for Authors, Denise M. Colby

But first, are you still needing some encouragement for writing book reviews? Here are some additional benefits related to posting book reviews on your website.  

Three reasons your website (and you) benefit by writing a book review:

  1. Blog reviews provide content your readers would be interested in, which expands the content in your blog. You’re providing interesting content and writing something of interest to both you and your readers.
  2. Build trust and community with your readers and enhance your overall brand by posting reviews and book introductions. You’ll help other authors (who might be willing to do the same for you), and add street cred. Who knows, your readers may find you as a go-to for finding out about new books to read.
  3. Review books in your genre, and use terms that fit tropes & keywords readers use to search for books. This allows your website and/or social media pages to appear in searches with these words.

So, now that you’re ready to write a book review, how exactly do you add SEO when you post this book review?

Seven steps to adding SEO to your Book Review Post

  1. Use the book title and Author name in the Title of your post
  2. Use the book title as the keyword phrase (keyword phrases should only be used in one post, but can be used multiple times within that one post)
  3. Build a category and tag system that includes Genre or Author Name (especially if you review more than one book by the same Author)
  4. Include a photograph of the book cover and make sure that the file name has the book title in it or the Author name, as well as the alt text. You could even include a photograph of the author. 
  5. Link the photo of the book to a sale site for easy purchase (outside link builds SEO)
  6. Link the photo of the author to their own website (outside link builds SEO)
  7. Mention the book title and author name within the body text of your review at least one other time (this builds on your keyword phrase)

When readers search for these authors and book titles, your blog review could appear in their search results

Example of a book review

You don’t have to write a lot to feature a book in a blog post.

Sing in the Sunlight by Kathleen Denly

Sing in the Sunlight book review example by Denise M. Colby. Including an image with alt text can add SEO value to your book review

This is book 2 in her Chaparral Hearts series, published by Wild Heart Books (and yes I’ve read book 1 and looking forward to book #3). The historical setting is in California, mostly in the San Diego area.

Sing in the Sunlight by Kathleen Denly is a special story of love, kindness, & patience.

I loved the characters, their interactions with each other, and the way God’s words were woven throughout the story naturally. 

The historical context was rich with details and I felt right there in the story. 

The struggles of doubt and longing and the lies we believe were very easy to identify with. 

It’s amazing what can happen when one continuously seeks God’s wisdom and stays on the path of doing what’s right. I want to be a better person after reading this. 

I wanted to disclose that I received a free copy from the author but was not required to review it. I enjoyed it so much that I wanted to share.

Grow your SEO by writing book reviews

I’ll be honest, I’ve found writing book reviews to be challenging, but I’m working on facing that fear. I recently wrote about challenging myself to write a book review on A Slice of Orange blog. That’s where I first wrote this book review.

If writing book reviews feel intimidating, another way to build SEO on your website, is to participate in the First Line Fridays posts. This group of bloggers post the first line of a book they are reading, including a photo and link to purchase. You can add author names, book titles in your posts, and build SEO similarly to a book review.

And, they are fun and easy to be a part of. Take a look at the ones I’ve posted in the past at the link above.

Either way, adding other author’s works to your blog posts extend your potential reach of readers who search for that author or their books. Give it a try. And help another author out by promoting their book!

Blessings,

Denise

Marketing for Authors

Custom URL Slug and How to Make One

What is a custom URL slug? A custom URL slug is choosing the words used for the tail end of a URL (website link) that identifies a particular page on a website.

Blog banner graphic highlighting blog post about creating custom URL slugs for your blog with Marketing for Authors logo on it, teal and black colors

Why does a custom URL slug matter?

By customizing a URL slug, you can make a website link compact, readable, memorable, and searchable.

Searchable means someone can find it if they type the exact words or similar words in a search engine and your webpage appears on the search results.

How can a the slug appear in the searches we want?

Choose the right words and customize it.

Remove the extra words that don’t carry any weight in explaining what the page or post is about. Words such as the, and, of.

The simpler, the better. Just 4-5 words max.

And using the Keyword or phrase you’ve selected is a bonus when building SEO. 

When choosing a keyword, think about how someone might search for the content you are writing. What would the words be that they might type into a search bar?

I would recommend doing your own search to see if the slug you are choosing shows search results you would like your page to appear on. This way, you know for sure you are targeting the right words, and the right audience.

Where do you customize the URL Slug?

Everyone’s setup for the website is different. If you see a permalink section, it will display what your currect URL slug will look like, and you can edit it right in that spot.

screen shot of the permalink field in wordpress where you can edit the URL slug
This is what the permalink field looks like where you can edit the URL slug

I highly recommend at least the free version of Yoast, where there’s a specific spot to view and update the URL slug. You can edit it right there in that section.

screen shot of the Yoast URL slug field where you can customize the slug
This is what the Yoast URL field looks like

Don’t change them once slugs are published

If you have shared the page on social media or in a newsletter or on another page, don’t go back and change the URL slug. Even taking out one word will alter the link and anyone clicking on it will get an error message.

I know I have several slugs I would love to go back and change and make them stronger and shorter because I didn’t know what I didn’t know. But changing them will create other issues that it’s not worth the headaches to go back. 

Keep in mind, all is not lost. 

If you have favorites you want to better align with your new SEO strategy, consider rewriting them in a new post that you can use with updated SEO keywords and URL’s. 

Build Your SEO Strategy

And keep a log of your URL’s, keywords, and other SEO, so that you don’t repeat the same ones. Remember, no two posts or pages should share the same SEO. This will actually have a negative effect on your overall SEO score.

Learn more about SEO and how to build SEO, by signing up for my Marketing for Authors newsletter (this is one of my URL slugs that was created way before I knew better).

You may also look at past blog posts I’ve written specifically related to brand and SEO on this blog or in my monthly column on A Slice of Orange.

Word of the Year

An Entire Year to Focus On The Word Wisdom

This is the year I will focus on the word Wisdom!

blog header title with Orange Banner with Word of the year across the top and large letters Wisdom underneath with 2021 at the bottom

Yes, that’s my word for 2021. And how did I come up with that particular word?

Well, the word Wisdom chose me much like last year’s word, Courage, did. I became laser focused on it around October and every time I saw or heard it used, it continued to jump out at me. So as I looked into other options, it never moved from the top of the list.

So the word Wisdom it is!

As I dug into researching the word, I’ve learned that Wisdom is not a word used alone. Knowledge, experience and deep understanding are closely tied to it.  One of the terms I read in relation to this, was INTEGRATION of the three.

Which is exactly the reason I had chosen it. I want to take the knowledge and experience I have so far and apply it to whatever I am doing. In life and in my writing.

And when I don’t know the answer, to seek others with the wisdom to help teach me and guide me. 

I love this definition I found on wisdom.

Wisdom involves a healthy dose of perspective and the ability to make sound judgments about a subject while knowledge is simply knowing.

found on dictionary.com

This is the wisdom I seek.

In all aspects of my life.

Other terms I found within the different definitions of Wisdom include; insight, judgment, decision-making, discernment, and sense of balance. 

That last phrase, “Sense of Balance” speaks to me. 

There’s a balance of taking all points of perspective and then firmly deciding on what course of action to move forward with. 

Making decisions is not easy. Not in life. Not in writing a novel. I’ve received such different feedback from contest judges that it’s been challenging for me to know how to move forward. This year, I want to finish and publish my book. And that means making sound wise decisions I can move forward with.

And that gets me super excited about this word and this year

I found it interesting when I googled wisdom quotes, for there were so many! It goes without saying that most quotes evoke a bit of wisdom in them, don’t they?

Still, I was able to find some that pertained to wisdom in general. Here are a few of those quotes about wisdom itself:

Aren’t these great!

What I didn’t know until I spent some time researching and putting together specific tidbits, was how deep this word was going to be for me for this year. There is a lot here for me to pause and reflect on.

I always pick Bible Verses to support my word for the year. So as I dug into the Bible, I found more about wisdom than I expected. Who knew that this word was so rich in the Bible! 

Of course, I could study the book of Proverbs all year long because of the wisdom found there.


For those who may not know, Proverbs is attributed to have been written by Solomon, the son of David, who was blessed by God with a perspective of wisdom no one else has attained. Leaders from all over came to hear him speak and learn from him. Here’s a summary from Pastor Chuck Swindoll on the topic


So I’ve had to make the decision to focus on only verses that I found the word Wisdom or Wise in, specifically. Even though I have many I will refer to throughout the year, here are three that stood out to me right now:

For my writing:

Proverbs 18:15—The heart of the discerning acquires knowledge; the ears of the wise seek it out

For my Teaching:

Proverbs 31:26—She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue 

And for me personally (because I have adult children)

Proverbs 17:17—A man of knowledge uses words with restraint and a man of understanding is even-tempered.

I’m still exploring quotes, verses, and synonyms that are connected to the word wisdom. 

I loved these synonyms: Acumen, gumption, foresight, experience, savvy, caution, poise, prudence, reason, discrimination, discernment, practicality, shrewdness, solidity, stability, judiciousness, comprehension, astuteness.

These are some fun terms I hope to utilize throughout the year! I definitely hope to have the foresight, gumption and savvy to get my book pitched, accepted and published this year!

All in all, I find Wisdom an interesting word and I’m excited to focus on it as my year of the word for 2021. 

Here’s to a great year full of wisdom for us all.

Blessings,

Denise